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Serene India: Beach life & ancient yoga in Kerala
Immerse yourself in regular yoga sessions, learn how to cook traditional Keralan recipes and kayak through the region’s lush mangroves
About your trip
Immerse yourself in ancient yoga, encounter the flavours of Southern India and relax on soft white beaches on this serene wellness escape.
India is the birthplace of yoga, mindfulness and meditation, and you’ll feel it more than ever in the southern state of Kerala. Offering a quieter route into India’s vibrant culture, you’ll find Kerala a relaxing counterpart to the manic energy of the northern cities.
As you absorb yourself in daily yoga sessions, kayak through the lush landscape and uncover the secrets of the local cuisine, city life will soon seem like a distant dream.
- Local transport
- Most meals included
- Max 14 travellers per group
- Atol protected
Remember, flights aren't included. We're happy to help you find the best ones for you.
Day 01 The call of Kochi
Welcome to Kerala. A private transfer will greet you at the hotel, ready to whisk you to your hotel in Fort Kochi. Meet your fellow travellers at the hotel, then you’ll head out together to explore Fort Kochi’s charming streets. Offering a rich blend of colonial history, ancient mosques and trendy cafes, Fort Kochi is a delight to discover. Stroll along the harbour, where you’ll see fishermen casting giant Chinese nets out to sea, or weave through alleyways lined with galleries and boutiques. Enjoy a few sundowner drinks with your group, before making your way to a traditional restaurant for dinner. Keralan cuisine is renowned for its unique flavours; we recommend the seafood curries and crispy dhosa, in particular.
Day 02 Morning yoga & Keralan cuisine
Begin your day with a yoga session, then you’ll catch a ferry over to Vypin Island – think long sandy beaches and uninterrupted sea views. It’s here where you’ll be divided into two teams, each given mystery box containing a selection of secret ingredients. Under the guidance of local chef Neema, you’ll learn how to transform these ingredients into traditional dishes, before feasting on your creations. After lunch, catch your transfer over to the tea hills of Munnar. Home to South India’s largest tea-producing region, you’ll find a canvas of terraced plantations shrouded by mists of cloud forest. Check into your beautiful mountain resort and take the rest of the evening to relax. Our recommendation? Sink into the outdoor pool, with panoramic views of the mountains unfolding around you.
Day 03 Tea flavours & mountain indulgence
Today will see you head over to the Lockhart Estate, a tea plantation dating back to 1879. Spend the morning exploring the plantations, where you’ll learn how to cultivate tea leaves alongside local farmers. Tuck into a freshly-made lunch on the estate, before spending the rest of the afternoon learning about the methods of tea production, with the opportunity to process your own pickings.To round off your visit, you’ll enjoy an exclusive tea tasting with a range of local flavours to sample, before a relaxing evening at the resort.
Day 04 From mountain to coast
Rise at dawn to admire the highlands glowing with sunrise through the morning mists. You’ll then catch your transfer back down to Kerala, where the rest of the day is yours to enjoy the coast as you please. Settle into your new hotel, a beautiful Keralan home on Vembanad Lake with an Ayurvedic spa and open-air bathrooms. Then, as evening draws in, hop aboard a kettavallum houseboat for a memorable sunset cruise.
Day 05 Backwater kayaking & local cuisine
Welcome the day with a morning yoga session. Then, you’ll want to fill up on breakfast at the hotel, because you’ll be embarking on a day-long kayaking adventure through Kerala’s famous backwaters. Navigate your way through hidden rivers and lush mangroves, with tall coconut trees arching gracefully overhead. Here, you’ll encounter a peaceful world secluded in Kerala’s backwaters: groups of school children flying kites, crab fishermen reeling in their catch, women in vibrant saris spinning reels on the riverbanks. Back at the hotel, enjoy a massage in the spa or head to the lakeside restaurant for local dishes such as karimeen: crispy fish wrapped in plantain leaves, served with a chilli marinade.
Day 06 Mindful meditation & coastal beauty
Start your day with relaxing yoga session, before venturing half an hour up the coastline to Mararikulam. With azure sea, endless white sands and fishing boats dotted along the horizon, this is Southern India at its most picturesque. Check into your hotel, a luxurious retreat nestled between 30 acres of lily ponds and fruit trees, with the rest of the day all yours to spend however you please. Explore the boathouse library along the coast, book yourself into the Ayurvedic spa or unwind in an afternoon meditation session at the hotel. Then, as sunset falls over the coast, head to the open-air bar for a cold beer, or enjoy some fresh masala-fried squid at the nearby ocean grill.
Day 07 Sun-soaked charms & candlelit feasts
Your day begins with an immersive yoga and meditation session, with another sun-soaked day on the beach ahead of you. There’s plenty to be savoured here, from organic cooking classes to wildlife walks led by local naturalists. Explore the fishing villages dotted along the coast, or visit the harbour to see the daily catch hauled in. Or, simply relax on the beach with a book in hand and the warm Arabian Sea at your disposal – the choice is yours. In the evening, gather with your group for a candlelit feast, with a spread of fragrant curries and seafood dishes to tuck into.
Day 08 Goodbye, Kerala
After a buffet breakfast at the hotel, you might have time for a last dip in the pool before arranging your transfer back to the airport. It’s a 90-minute drive, but the hotel can help organise taxis for a reasonable price. Want to see more of India? Enjoy a prequel to this trip with our longer adventure in Rajasthan, Kerala’s majestic northern neighbour.
Our Favourite Hotels
Browse a selection of our favourite hotels, for a flavour of where you may stay on this trip.
Coconut Lagoon, Kumarakom
Idyllic riverside escape in Kerala's Kuttanad region
Coconut Lagoon’s wooden bungalows and mansion house lie on the banks of picturesque Vembanad Lake. Rooms come with shady verandahs, there’s a large communal pool and excellent curries at the onsite Aymanam restaurant.
Why we stay here
Experiences are key here, from bird watching and canoeing, to sunset boat trips and daily yoga. There are also regular cultural performances and a floating tea shop.
The Marari Beach, Mararikulam
Eco-friendly coastal retreat
A super-stylish hotel with heart, thanks to initiatives such as plastic-free toiletries, solar panels and rainwater harvesting, plus a project with local female weavers who make the elegant towels in the guests’ thatch-roof bungalows.
Why we stay here
There’s no TV but who needs one when you have a yoga centre, an Ayurvedic spa, volleyball, tennis and a beach library with hammocks?
The Blanket, Munnar
Five-star retreat in the misty tea hills
Surrounded by scenic views of the mountains, you’ll feel immersed in the Southern Indian landscape here.
Why we stay here
Elegant rooms with a touch of luxury will make you feel a world away from home; and floating in the infinity pool and gazing out at the misty valleys is a truly memorable experience.
Fly into and out of Cochin International Airport (COK).
Please ensure that your flight lands no later than 11am on day 1, so that you arrive at the hotel in time for your welcome meeting at 2pm. You can depart anytime on the last day, but please be aware that you’ll need to factor in five hours between leaving the hotel and your flight departure time.
In the backwaters of Alleppey, many people stay the night on kettuvallum houseboats. But between petrol fumes, blaring music and crowded parking spaces, we prefer to draw on the facilities of a luxury canal-front hotel.
All included meals will be served in a buffet format, so you can pick and choose between a wide range of dishes and experience the diversity of Keralan cuisine first-hand.
Please be aware that the itinerary, activities and hotels are subject to change. These changes can happen with little notice due to availability, poor weather, seasonal changes, or other circumstances beyond our control. From time to time we may also make changes to your itinerary to try out new ideas and keep things fresh.
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Our trips are for like-minded people in their 30s and 40s – and 98% of them join us solo. It’s almost a given you’ll make friends.
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Our guides on the ground know their destinations better than anyone, so expect unprecedented access to local living and cultural secrets.
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